Councils call for powers to help NEET youngsters

Generic Youth UnemploymentAlmost all young people could be either in work or learning by the end of the decade if councils were allowed to lead on youth unemployment schemes, the Local Government Association has claimed.

Currently councils are responsible for helping young people up to the age of 18, but those aged between 19 and 24 are reliant on central government agencies such as Jobcentre Plus.

The LGA said councils had overseen a 44% drop in the number of 16- to 18-year-olds not in education or employment over the last five years. The comparable figure for central governed scheme was 7.5%, the association claimed.

It today pledged that half a million young people could be helped in to education or work over the next five year if councils were given powers to run training and employment schemes. Almost 800,000 young people across England are not in education, employment or training.

David Simmonds, chair of the LGA’s children and young people’s board, said: ‘Local government has high ambitions for our young people and in areas where councils have taken the lead and driven forward schemes to ensure every child has the opportunity to reach their full potential, we are seeing fantastic results with the number of teenagers disengaging now at an all-time now.

‘Government needs to allow councils and their local partners to fully take the lead and develop quality services that are built around the needs of young people and employers rather than complex national bureaucracies.’




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